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The Ottawa naturalist. 

Ottawa,Ottawa Field-Naturalists' Club. 
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82 The Ottawa Naturalist, [July 

REPORT ON A COLLECTION OF FOSSIL WOODS FROM 

THE CRETACEOUS OF ALBERTA. 



By D. P. Penhallow, D.Sc, F R S C , F.G.S.A. 



Early in the present year, Mr. L. M. Lambe, of the Geological 
Survey, placed in my hands a specimen of fossil wood for deter- 
mination. It was without number, but it was described as having 
been collected by Mr. Milliken from the Edmonton Series of 
the Red Deer River, 100 miles west of Gleichen, Alberta, 

At a later date, Mr, Lambe sent me six additional specimens 
for determination. These were all reported as derived from 
the Judith River (Belly River) Series of the Red Deer River, 
Alberta. The catalogue numbers on the specimens correspond 
to the following general description: — - 

Nos. 275, 276, 319 and 330— Silicified woods. 
No. 838 — Silicified wood not determinable in conse- 
quence of extended decay and distortion of structure. 
No. 1676 — A longitudinal section of a cone, 

PlCEA ALBERTENSIS, N. SP. 

The specimen numbered 1676, is a longitudinal section of 
a cone, the basal portion of which has been removed. As found, 
it measures 38 mm, in its greatest length, and 18 mm. In its greatest 
width. The tipper end is complete, and the general structure 
is also intact within the limits of the specimen. The basal 
portion of the cone appears to have been carried away by fracture 
of the matrix. 

The character of the specimen does not admit of full deter- 
mination, but the shape immediately suggests comparison w 7 ith 
a cone of Picea, while both the size and general outline invite 
comparison with P. columbiensis , Penh., recently described as 
having been obtained by Dr. R. A, Daly from the Tertiary 
deposits of the Kettle River, B.C. 1 Measurements of the two 
cones show that the Alberta specimen is slightly narrower, and 
that about one-fifth of its length has been removed. The 
cojrespondence is so close that the two might well be regarded 
as the same species, but in the absence of external characters, 
such a correlation would be unsafe, and it seems desirable to 
designate the cone by a distinctive name, P. alherfensis, n. sp. 

CUPRESSOXYLON MACROCARPOIDES, PENH, 

Specimens 319 and 330 proved to be fairly well preserved 
woods of Cupvessoxylon macrocarpoides, with which it w 7 as pos- 
sible to compare them without difficulty. 

I Rept. on Foss. PI. from the Interna t. Bound. Surv. for 1903-05. Trans. R.3.C* t 
VIII, 1907, iv. 



I 



1908] A Collection of Fossil Woods. 83 

This is a species originally described from the Cretaceous 
of Medicine Hat, Alberta, but which ha:; more recently been 
found in the Tertiary of Kettle River, near Midway, B,C. 2 
Its present occurrence in the Edmonton Series is, therefore, 
fully in accord with its previously known distribution. 

Sequoia albertensis, n. sp. 

The unnumbered specimen from the Edmonton Series 
represents a wood which is exceedingly well preserved in many 
portions, and admits of a detailed diagnosis, It is therefore 
taken as the type to which specimens 275 and 276 also belong, 
and they all clearly represent the same species of Sequoia. The 
diagnosis is as follows: — 

Sequoia albertensis, x. sp. 

Transverse. — Growth rings variable; the summer wood 
dense, sometimes rather open and occasionally double, the 
transition from the spring wood rather abrupt ; spring wood open, 
the tracheitis thin- walled, large, distinctly squarish- hexagonal 
and often much elongated radially. Resin cells scattering, 
sometimes rather numerous throughout, but especially dominant 
in the summer wood. Medullary rays distant 2-8, more rarely 
10 rows of tracheitis. Tracheids rather uniform, sometimes in 
irregular rows in the summer wood. 

Radial, — Ray cells straight or more often contracted at the 

ends, equal to about 4 spring tracheids; the upper and lower 
walls rather thick, entire or sparingly pitted; the terminal walls 
rather thin, not pitted; the lateral walls with oval, conspicuouslv 
bordered pits, the broadly lenticular orifice usually diagonal to the 
cell axis, at first 1 or £?, at length becoming 1 per tr ache id in the summer 
wood. Bordered pits large, numerous, round or oval, commonly 
in two rotes in the earlier spring wood. Pits on the tangential 
walls of the summer tracheids numerous and prominent and 
large, but rather narrowly lenticular. Resin cells numerous, 
resinous. 

Tangential, — Medullary rays numerous, often upwards of 
54 cells high, frequently more or less two-rowed. Cells frequent ly 
very resinous, oval or squarish, sometimes oblong, but chiefs- 
uniform and equal throughout. 

A comparison of these woods with that of the existing 
S. sempervirens, or red- wood, show T s most interesting and very 
close relations. In the diagnosis of 5. albertensis. certain of the 
structural details are given in italics, These indicate the res- 
pects in which there is an essential difference between it and 
5. sempervirens. In all other features the two woods are 

2. Ibid. 



84 The Ottawa Naturalist [July 

essentially identical, and one might well be led, at first /to question 
if they are not, after all, only one form of the same species. But 
the number of pits which characterize the radial walls of the 
ray cells, the number of rows of pits on the radial walls of the 
tracheids, and the size and form of the pits on the tangential 
walls of the summer tracheids, point with certainty to specific 
differences, and the fossil is, therefore, described under a new 
name, for which purpose that of the province seems to be ap- 
propriate. 

General Conclusions. 

The character of the material discussed in the foregoing 
studies, leaves very little room for any conclusions which would 
be of value in stratieranhical determinations. 

The specimen of Picea offers only one of a very few examples 
of the occurrence of cones of this genus in Cretaceous deposits. 
Berry has recently shown the existence of beautifully preserved 
cones of Picea cliffwoodensis in the Upper Cretaceous of New 
Jersey, ! These he regards as comparable with the cones 
of P. excels a. They, however, offer no points of comparison 
with P. alheriensis, inasmuch as thev are much larger and more 
linear-oblong. 

As already noted, Penhallow has recorded the sparing 
occurrence of cones of P. columhiensis in the Tertiary of Kettle 
River, British Columbia, Knowlton has found cones of P. har- 
rimam 2 in the Upper Eocene of Kukak Bay, Alaska, a form which 
is in no sense comparable with P. alberteitsis, though it presents 
many features strikingly similar to those of P. ctiffwoodensis. 

It may be recalled in this connection, that the foliage of 
what are at present regarded as distinct species — P. iranquil- 
lensis, Penh., and P\ quilchensis , Penh., 3 — ■ has been 
obtained from the Tertiary of the Tranquille River and from 
Quilchena, B.C., and there is no present evidence to show that 
the more recently observed cone from the Cretaceous of Alberta, 
is not related to one of them, rather than to P. columhiensis, 
If these two were to be regarded as specifically identical, it would 
be possible to recognize a wider geological range for the species 
than has heretofore been known; but in the absence of external 
characters in the Alberta specimen, such a correlation would be 
unsafe, 

Ciipressoxylon macmcctrpoides, Penh-, has been determined 
on previous occasions, to be common to both the Tertiary and 
Cretaceous, 4 and its present occurrence in Cretaceous deposits, 

1. The Flora of the Cliffwood Clays, Geol Surv, N.J., 1905, 

2. Fossil Plants from Kukak Bay rtarriman. ExpcL. 1QQ4, iv, 150. 

3. Report on the Tertiary Flora of British Columbia, Geol. Stirv. Can., Monogr. 1908- 

4. N. A. Gymnosperrns, Penhallow. 238, 



1908 J A Collection of Fossil Woods. 85 

rann.it be regarded as having any special stratigraphica] sfenifi- 



cance. 



As bearing upon the present studies, it is worthy of note I hat 
m his discussion of the Flora of the Judith River beds Knowlton 
records at least three species of Sequoia. 5 Two of these are 
represented by foliage and small branches only. $. reichenbachii 
(Gemitz) Hcer, is known to extend from the Dakota formation 
to the Belly River Series, in which it is found in Canada S 
heterophylhi is a well known Cretaceous form of both Europe and 
America, and in the latter it ranges from the Later Potomac 
to the Willow Creek Series. 

The third species is represented bv a cone only as obtained 
from the Judith River beds ten miles north of Wild Horse Like 
Alberta, This species, which Knowlton does not distinguish bv a' 
specific name, he nevertheless finds to be very near to 5 heerii 
Lesq., although it likewise greatly resembles certain cones of 
5. reidwnbachu from the Kome beds of Greenland as described 
by Heer. It may be the fruit of the wood now under discussion 
It is, however, impossible to correlate these isolated specimens 
more completely at this time. 

From the brief survey of the material thus presented it is 
clear that the different species possess no special value for strati 
graphical purposes, but they do extend our knowledge of their 
geological range and geographical distribution in important and 
interesting ways. 

5. Geo]. & Pal. Judith River Beds. U. S. Geol, Stify,, H„H. 257, !Q<)5. \.\\. li2 . 



DESCRIPTION OF FIGURES. 
Sequoia Albertrxsis n. sp. 
Fig. I . Transverse section showing the general character of the s* ructure 

Pig. 2, Transverse section showing the double summer wood of the 

broader growth rings, x 52. 

Fig. 3. Tangential section .showing the character of the medullarv rw« 

Fig - 4 ' "tl^Vi. \" ry r " y - sh ™e *««« "* 

Fig. 5. Radial section showing the two-seriate bordered nits ,.r . i, 

spring tracheitis . x 227.5. ' ttu 

Fig. 6. Radial section showing the number and position of (.ordered 

pits on the tangential walb of the summer wood- " 




Fig, 1 




I ' ■ . i 2 




Pi 



Y g- 3 




Fig. 4 



88 



> 



&l^£ 



The Ottawa Naturalist 



[July 




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3HARY|au 



NESTING [OF COOPER'S HAWK. 

Nbbiir^L st) ending a few days at 

A friend, who ^"f^J^tle St. Lou.s. told me 

Woodlands, Quebec on ™ j^^^LS "white" eggs; hut stated 

he had found an owl's nest Jg^gg*^ becaus r t he bird had 

he was not quite sure as to ^ ent ^ cax - _ From his des- 

left the ^?^£^j$£te& was very doubtful 
caption of the^nest andhab^ *g ^ q£ ^ SQ a specml 

whether the nest m question 

Sip was made to the locaMy on May 1st ^ tQ 

While about 7 5 yards away a sn^ I ^^ wWch was 

flv from the vicinity ot the neb . everg reeti tree, was 

placed about 35 feet up n f the t ° an g cmtained the 

Ult of sticks, bark, and a feiv feather ^ 

three eggs. Which, on sight, proved to rf ^ g^ 

Hawk. The eggs are a trifle smaller some what 

Winged Hawk and ere ot a ng five d 

soiled. Incubation was ad a^ced & ^ parts> 

tte ;"rhe b fir S ;^nentic''?eco , ra we have of it nesting about the 

this is Lilt lu^ «ia ^ „ + fifteen years. 

Island of Montreal j^^^ Que ., June 13, .908.